When the Immigration Rules were amended on 6 April 2013, they were written in a way that will only allow the family members of Tier 4 (General) students to join or stay with them in the UK if they satisfy the following circumstances:
- A partner or child must currently have, or have last had, immigration permission as the partner or child of a Tier 4 (General) student during the three month period before the date of their application;
- the Tier 4 (General) student must be applying for a course of study of more than six months duration and currently have or have last had immigration permission for a course that is longer than six months during the three months before the date of application.
The Home Office has confirmed that that is a mistake, and that the rules will be corrected in July; it was not the intention to exclude those family members who could previously join Tier 4 students under the rules in place before 6 April 2013. UKCISA has been told that Home Office staff who make decisions on immigration applications have been told about this problem.
Unfortunately the applications of some family members who should be allowed to join a Tier 4 student have been refused. If your family members are intending to make applications to join or stay with you in the UK, please be aware that they could be refused if they do not satisfy each of the requirements above.
We have produced the following wording which you may wish to submit as a letter with your family member's immigration application in order to make the decision makers aware of the errors in the rules and the Home Office position on this.
Please note that this will not guarantee that an application will succeed, or that the incorrect rules will not be applied to the case. We recommend that you seek advice from your college or university's International Student Adviser before your family members make an application, or if an application they have already made is refused.
Please see Bringing your family for details about which family members may join or stay with you in the UK, and the requirements for their applications.